Banged up Bergeron can't cash in on OT chance

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Banged up Bergeron can't cash in on OT chance

Patrice Bergeron gave it everything he could.

The Bruins two-way center was taking it the hardest of almost anybody as he stood and discussed the season being over after the Bruins had dropped a 2-1 overtime decision to the Washington Capitals, and perhaps with good reason. Bergeron played through nagging injuries during the year including a slapper off the knee in a road game against the Penguins that couldnt even knock him out for a game and had a final upper-body issue that nagged at him in the final two plus games of Bostons first round defeat against the Caps.

Bergeron didnt want to discuss the specifics of the injury in the postgame locker room, and instead wanted to work through the emotions of loss, despair and emptiness that always arrive for the Bs assistant captain. He made it through 19:53 of ice time and a couple of shots on net along with another successful face-off, but it was more readily apparent in Game 7 that the injury was affecting him as he uncharacteristically lost one-on-one battles all over the ice thats usually his domain.

I dont want to use that tonight. Ill let you guys know. I dont want to talk about it right now if you guys dont mind, said Bergeron. Obviously on the checkout day on Friday Ill let you guys know.

It was a little better but not much better. Like I said I dont want to use that as an excuse right now. Its a tough one to swallow and I really dont want to put that on an injury. Im not the only one that goes through that stuff.

In the cruel twist of fate from the hockey gods, they saw fit to hand a weakened Bergeron the chance to win it right out of overtime. Dennis Seidenberg rifled a shot that hand-cuffed Braden Holtby before it bounced to Bergeron crashing the net just 45 seconds into the overtime session.

The puck was bouncing wildly in front of the Bs center masquerading as a right wing due to injury, and he tried to corral as best he could wincing all the way. Instead Bergeron wobbled a shot wide of the largely-vacant net to the left side and the TD Garden fans groaned knowing that theyd frittered away a golden scoring opportunity in the extra session.

It kind of exploded just rolled on my stick and the puck was bouncing, said Bergeron. I just tried to go quick because obviously there wasnt a lot of time and the puck wouldnt settle.

You look at all the overtime goals in this series, its always like that. Its a tough break or a lucky bounce and the other team doesnt get that. I think thats what it is. It was overtime and its one shot.

In the end Bergeron was just another member of the Bruins that was banged up and less than 100 percent of himself at the end of a long, challenging season for the reigning Stanley Cup champs. But No. 37 can hold his head high that he answered the bell at every turn even when things got tough and more than a little wince-worthy this season.

Blidh plans to bring some energy to Bruins after call-up

Blidh plans to bring some energy to Bruins after call-up

BRIGHTON, Mass. – Anton Blidh plans on keeping things pretty straightforward on his first call-up to the NHL. 

The former sixth-round pick of the Bruins has earned his stripes at the AHL level with Providence over the last couple of seasons, and comes to Boston as a gritty, energy forward capable of stirring things up in otherwise sleepy games. There’s also a bit of offensive upside for a fourth line-type player with five goals and nine points with 22 penalty minutes and a plus-eight rating in 19 games for the P-Bruins this season. 

It remains to be seen if the Blidh call-up means that the Bruins intend to scratch a player or that somebody is questionable for Saturday afternoon’s game in Buffalo, but Patrice Bergeron did miss Friday’s practice without any real defined reason for his absence. The 21-year-old Swede said he plans to play to his strengths if he gets into the lineup for the Black and Gold, and that could mean getting under the skin of his Sabres opponents. 

“It’s my first time called up, so I’m happy,” said Blidh, who was asked what he'll bring if he gets into the lineup. “I’ll just play simple and play my own game: be hard on the puck and play with some energy. I worked hard [in Providence] and then I got some confidence. I’m not a goal-scorer, but I scored a couple of goals and got some confidence.”

Claude Julien hasn’t been able to catch up Blidh’s work since the season got started, but was pleased by the youngster’s progress in training camp, where he earned notice for his feisty, physical play on a line with Noel Acciari. 

“They said he’s playing well, so they brought him up. We’ll get to see him, hopefully tomorrow,” said Julien. “I didn’t hear a ton of fine details aside from him being a guy that was certainly playing with a lot of energy. I didn’t mind him in training camp either. He works really hard and competes hard, and we could use that.”

That would certainly be the case after watching the Bruins go through the motions for long stretches Thursday night against Carolina before essentially stealing a game that they didn’t deserve to win. 

Friday, Dec. 2: Toews vs. Matthews

Friday, Dec. 2: Toews vs. Matthews

Here are all the links from around the hockey world and what I’m reading, while everybody in New England is in mourning over the latest Gronk booboo. 

*A pretty neat sharpshooting video with Jonathan Toews and that young whippersnapper Auston Matthews squaring off against each other. 

*Craig Custance looks a little deeper into the situation with the Florida Panthers and how things are stabilizing after the rough firing of Gerard Gallant last week. 

*Now. let’s get to the real important stuff: the San Jose Sharks website has put together their Movember rankings for the player’s mustaches. 

*FOH (Friend of Haggs) Bruce Garrioch says that the plans for an outdoor game in Ottawa are again back on the NHL’s agenda. 

*Erik Erlendsson has put together a “Lightning Insider” website where you can find all the latest news about the Tampa Bay franchise. Check it out. 

*As guys such as Anton Khudobin prove when they’re thrust into the starting spot, backup goalies matter in today’s NHL. 

*For something completely different: a mash-up of Kylo Ren and “Girls” from the mad mind of Adam Driver is exactly just that.